Magazine article Dance Spirit

BEAT THE Postgrad ?LUES

Magazine article Dance Spirit

BEAT THE Postgrad ?LUES

Article excerpt

These fifty's, Francesca "Frankie" Axam-Hocker and Ahren Victory are doing great: Axam-Hocker, who graduated from the Boston Conservatory at Berklee in 2014 with a BFA in dance, is now senior manager of visitor services at The Paley Center for Media; Victory, who graduated from the University of Arizona in 2017 with a BA in arts, media, and entertainment, is now playing Sillabub in the national tour of CATS. But ask these dancers about the past few years, and it's clear their current successes don't tell the whole story. Yes, even the most talented and motivated dancers struggle with postgrad life-but there are ways to ease your fears, stress, and uncertainty.

JUST DO SOMETHING

Upon moving to NYC, Victory hit the non-Equity audition circuit hard-and it hit back. She'd wake up at dawn and wait all day in a "see of people," just for the small chance she'd get to audition. "It was easy to sink into other auditioners' negativity and bitterness," Victory says. "The biggest thing was realizing I had the power to create a bubble of positivity around myself. Whether I got seen or not, it was a good day because I showed up to do what I was supposed to."

Axam-Hocker watched friends struggle with the idea that dance gigs should cover all expenses. "Not to say dancers shouldn't be paid, but don't feel guilty about taking a service job or working in a box office," she says "You're here to dance, but you also have to eat. You'll get there-in the meantime, you might have to babysit. …

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